Kimi is an adorable seven-month-old Arctic fox cub – and according to international animal welfare organisation FOUR PAWS, he's got just ten days left to live. The young fox, one of thousands being bred at Finnish fur farms to supply fur to the fashion industry, has become the face of the group's latest campaign to highlight animal welfare abuses and cruelty within the industry. 

Kimi fox fur farms campaign_2014_10_20

The #savekimi campaign takes aim not only at the fur farms themselves, but also at fur auctioneers Saga Furs and luxury clothing brands like British label Burberry, which use fur in their collections. "Kimi is the beating heart of our campaign. He represents the 100 million animals killed for fashion every year around the world. The little fox lets us put a face to the living being behind the fur collar," says FOUR PAWS's Thomas Pietsch.

According to the group, Kimi is a "real animal" currently living on a Saga Furs facility in Finland and is likely to be euthanised (fur animals in Europe are killed by electrocution or gassing) during the so-called 'fur harvest' next month. 

The group's campaign page, which calls on brands like Burberry to stop using fur, has already amassed more than 150,000 signatures. Regular updates, in the form of 'Kimi's diary', are also being posted via Facebook and Instagram.

“If the British public knew the horror of what goes on behind the scenes on Finnish fur farms that provide fur to companies like Burberry, they would be shocked. ... [F]ootage we have acquired clearly shows the horrendous conditions these animals actually live in on the very farms from which Burberry source their fur," says FOUR PAWS UK Country Manager Julie Sanders. 

The group has also rebuffed arguments that fur is a 'greener' choice when compared to alternatives. "It’s ... highly misleading to suggest that real fur is an environmentally sound choice. A cocktail of harmful chemicals is used in the preparation of the pelts and the climate change impact of real fur along the production chain is much higher than that of other textiles,” it notes on its website.

Burberry has responded to the FOUR PAWS campaign by saying that it's working with its suppliers "to improve animal welfare standards" at fur farming facilities.

More than 7,200 fur farms exist in the European Union, mainly in Finland, Denmark and the Netherlands, producing around 35 million mink furs and two million fox furs each year.